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Heavy Duty or Flexible?

By Jordy Byrd

Tough tested isn’t just a motto. The phrase defines DuraLabel products, which have been through fire and back in our testing lab before they make it to you. Our valve tags are no exception.

These durable tags are designed to withstand the harshest conditions in oil pipelines and industrial plants. Tags provide critical safety information and valve specs – so outsourcing isn’t an option. When you need a custom tag and trusted dependability, choose DuraLabel. Our line of rigid and flexible tags will help your facility create and repair tags quickly and affordably.

National Standards

Valve tag placement isn’t explicitly required by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) or the American National Standards Institute (ANSI); however both require pipe marking systems and propelry labeled pipes. Translation: if it’s not safe, OSHA will bust you.

Pipe labeling varies by facility, including ammonia, marine, and wastewater, yet shares a common denominator – valve tags. Valve tags relay need-to-know information on difficult or irregular surfaces (e.g. valves, actuators, and transmitters). The one or two-sided tags create a flat, rigid surface to convey safety and maintenance communication. Tags are commonly provided with pre-drilled holes and plastic or metal ties to fasten to the pipe.

Most tags include the following information:

  • Pipe contents (may be color coded by ANSI/ASME A13.1 pipe marking color standards)
  • Valve identifier
  • Barcode
  • Serial number
  • Valve function
  • Normal position of the valve
  • Type of valve actuator
  • Hazard communication information

Our complimentary Valve Tag Best Practice Guide provides industry practices and outlines everything from facility evaluations, to tag creation, standard abbreviations, and tag application. Get the guide to train employees and update your visual communications program. Now make some tags.

Heavy Duty vs. Flexible Valve Tags

You have two options when creating your valve tags: heavy duty or flexible.

Heavy duty tags are made by applying a vinyl label to a rigid plastic backing which produces a rugged surface that won’t curl, flop, or fold. Translation: the message is always visible. Two of the most common tag sizes are: 2 ¼" x 3 ¾" and 3" x 5".

Heavy duty tags offer:

  • A rigid, color-coded base for labels
  • Pre-drilled holes to hang with zip ties
  • Resistance to UV and scratching
  • Resistance to temperatures up to 225°F
  • Indoor and outdoor use

Use heavy duty valve tags to label valves, issue safety messaging, provide operating instructions, and display maintenance requirements. Available in various bright colors to match pipe and facility markings, the heavy duty valve tags give any label up to 4" wide a solid backing for marking. Sturdy construction means they'll work well in locations where harsh, abrasive conditions prevail.

A flexible valve tag is made by using a material such as DuraTag, a heavy duty material that’s printed on similar to vinyl tape. The tags are tough yet flexible, meaning they can be attached with zip ties or wrapped all the way around a pipe and are ideal for industrial tagging applications.

Flexible DuraTags offer:

  • A blank canvas for customization
  • Colors that resist heat up to 180°F
  • White that resists heat up to 200°F
  • Tear resistance, no grommets needed
  • Attachment with cable tie, chain, etc.
  • Indoor and outdoor use
  • Resistance to moisture and chemicals

DuraTag tags are easily attached with cable ties or chain to industrial equipment, manufacturing components, facility utilities, or even pipes. Simply punch a hole in the printed tag and attach where needed. Grommets are not necessary with this extremely tough and flexible tag stock.

DuraLabel printers will create custom messages no matter the supply – heavy duty or flexible. Put one to work in your facility today.